Published 14 Feb 2023

10 Must-Ask Interview Questions & Answers to Screen the Best Social Media Manager 

Check these tried and tested social media interview questions (and answers) to get the most out of your screening process.

10 Must-Ask Interview Questions & Answers to Screen the Best Social Media Manager 
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Hire Digital Editorial

14 Feb 2023

As of year-end 2022 reports, there are 4.2 billion social media users across the world, which accounts for 93% of internet users. These users jump between seven different platforms. 

It’s no wonder that marketers spent $65.3 billion on social media last year. 

Hence, it’s paramount to find an exceptional social media manager, given the sizeable investment most organizations put in using these platforms to expand reach and drive engagement.  

Assessing a handful of candidates can be quite a challenge after posting a comprehensive and attractive job description. So, to help you start off, we’ve listed interview questions and answers to help you filter the best of the best social media managers among your pool of candidates. 

These questions are crafted around the main skills every social media manager should have:

  • Content & copywriting
  • Communication & customer care
  • Creativity
  • Organization
  • Engagement
  • Data Analysis

Social Media Manager Interview Questions and Answers 

Question #1: What is your process of coming up with high-quality posts like?

Studies show that consumers prefer learning about brands through content over ads. Thus, the process of coming up with social media content that draws in an audience is extremely important.

A great social media manager must be able to name a few of these steps in achieving a good social media content strategy: 

  1. Identify your goal and set your metrics. Before content creation, you must identify what you want to ultimately achieve, which you can track with the following metrics: 
    • Create brand awareness: traffic

    • Drive brand loyalty: followers, engagement rates

    • Build authority/credibility: reach/impressions

    • Increase sales/revenue: conversion rates
    That said, it’s always wise to drill it down to even more specific goals. Let’s take a look at driving brand loyalty – with this broad goal, you would essentially want to increase your engagement rates. Thus, to narrow it down, aim to generate more likes, shares, comments, brand mentions, and even direct messages. 
  2. Identify your topic and format. Once you’ve identified your goal, it’s time to determine what sort of topics and formats can generate these numbers. StoryFuel’s content idea matrix provides a fairly useful framework, in which you identify what you’d like to talk about in your content, and determine the best format your audience can grasp what you’re trying to say. The different content formats usually worth exploring are the following: 
    • InfographicsVideosImagesCarousel 
    Of course, you may try different formats across each social media platform and see what works best with each of your channel’s audiences. But the common denominator among them all is that they’re all visual content, and that’s because social media is a highly saturated market in which every brand is trying to catch people’s short attention spans. In fact, Impact projects that 82% of customer traffic will come from visual content in 2023.
  3. Verify the quality of your content. It’s important to make a checklist in verifying whether your visual post passes the standard. Here are things to consider when creating your content:
    • Is the image or video in high resolution?
      Nothing destroys a post more than a low-res photo, which is an immediate turn-off for most audiences. Make sure that the images/videos you upload are at least 1280×1280 pixels.
    • Are you using unified colors or appropriate filters?
      Uniformity can be achieved with filters or color-grading, but these can make or break a photo. Ensure that the filters/colors used don’t take the attention away from the content itself. 
    • Do your posts (appropriately) include real people?
      Interestingly, pictures with people’s faces perform 40% better. This is because people want authenticity, and putting faces behind brands encourages trust. 
    • Does it have a high-quality and attractive copy?
      Captions can easily encourage engagement, but the challenge is coming up with a short text to complement the visuals. 

Question #2: How would you grow a brand’s social media presence and drive engagement across all their social platforms? 

Brand presence and engagement go hand-in-hand. If you have great engagement, your brand is more likely to appear in feeds and be shared by users. A candidate should be able to enumerate some of the main things that can drive that engagement to the nail: 

  • Always be present across all platforms.
    You can’t expect an audience to interact with you if your accounts stay radio silent. You want to always be visible to your audience, so it’s extremely important to stay active across all your social platforms.

    This doesn’t just apply to actively posting, but also responding to your followers’ comments and direct messages. Comments can be extremely insightful on what your audience is like.
  • Build a community.
    Successful social media marketing, and even digital marketing, don’t stop with acquiring a large number of followers. The key to brand loyalty is constant, positive engagement, which can be achieved by building a community people want to be part of. 

    How to build a community?
    • Ask for their opinions and views on your posts. 
    • Encourage user-generated content via creative campaigns/promos. 
    • Be active and comment on other accounts’ posts. 
    • Respond to important comments or posts quickly. 
    • Mention partners or brand ambassadors. 
    • Communicate the values and purpose behind your brand and products. 
    • Communicate how you can add value to the community.
  • Engage not just reactively, but also proactively. Here are a few ways to proactively engage with your audience:
    • Talk about relevant trending topics. 
    • Listen to what your loyal customers are saying or are interested in. 
    • Be a part of the bigger community/other communities. 
  • Leave space for authenticity and human connection in your content. Studies show that consumers trust people more than brands. It’s important to either:
    • Highlight the team behind the brand.
    • Share the history and mission of the brand. 
    • Mention the value the brand wants to add to the community.
    • Share any social responsibility efforts, and possibly open doors for consumers to participate.
  • Listen to your audience. As mentioned earlier, there are numerous ways to conduct social listening to see what your audience wants from you and thinks about you. Taking their sentiments into consideration can go a long way with engagement; it will make your audiences feel heard, which may just convert them to loyal customers.
  • Gamify your content and social experience. Audiences like to participate in rewarding experiences. An important aspect of gamification is rewarding your customers to ensure they will participate. Gamification is a gateway to more meaningful interactions, which may result in brand loyalty. 
  • Play a part in social responsibility. An Aflac research reveals that almost 8 out of 10 consumers believe companies that stay true to their ethics/values outperform others in their field. Consumers are now more influenced by external factors when it comes to their purchasing decisions. 

Question #3: How do you get the most out of look-alike audiences? Especially from cross-channel campaigns?

Look-alike audiences may be beneficial in scaling paid social ads as they’re more likely to convert. A good social media manager would be able to enumerate a few of these creative steps to ensure you get the most out of them: 

  • Exclude the worst. Most organizations drive traffic to lookalikes of the best audience, but not many think about setting up exclusions for the worst audiences. Excluding these audiences may impact customer retention and lifetime value. 
  • A/B test your bids. As you know, you may create a variety of lookalike audiences according to your source audience. These lookalike audiences will have different similarities with your source audience, so to find out which audience brings you the most lifetime value and revenue per conversion, it’s wise to place the same initial bid with each lookalike audience.
  • Get your competitors’ audience. Audiences that are interested in your competitors’ products and services are most likely to be interested in yours too. So, for instance, you can get these lookalike audiences by adding your competitors’ names in the interest tab of Facebook Audience Insights, along with other details such as location and demographics. 
  • Explore other source audiences. You can base your custom audiences on a wide variety of parameters. You can get creative with where you get these look-alike audiences from, and here are a few ideas where:
    • Similar content formats: For example, you intend to post an infographic, so you can create a lookalike audience based on the most engaged users from a previous infographic post.
    • Web visitors: Targeting all your web visitors might be too broad, so one way to target people with high purchase intent is to use the urchin tracking module codes. You can apply this by using “URL Contains ‘utm_source=google”. 
    • Email subscribers: One low-hanging fruit is to target similar people who are already interested in receiving news and updates about your organization. 

Question #4: How do you track the organic performance on different social media platforms? 

It’s quite simple to track the performance of your paid posts, but how can you analyze organic engagement? 

A social media manager must know the step-by-step per platform: 


Aside from hashtags and mentions, you can use the advanced search window to type your product or brand under ‘any of these words’. This will show you all tweets from public accounts that mention your product and brand, which can give you a general idea of your audience’s sentiments. 


To filter posts that mention your organization, follow these four easy steps: 

  1. Type the name of your organization’s name in the search bar
  2. Click Posts > Date Posted
  3. Set the time frame you want (past month is recommended)
  4. Click Show Results > Sort By > Latest > Show Results


Here are the following steps to analyze your posts’ organic reach: 

  1. Go to Facebook Insights 
  2. Click the Reach tab and set the time period
  3. Click the Paid or Organic box on the right side of the chart
  4. Download the page to access the following metrics from the ‘Overview’ tab:
    • The number of unique audiences that saw your page on their feeds over a time frame. 
    • The number of people who saw your posts over a time period. 
    • The number of people who have seen each of your posts. 

To track sentiments on Facebook, you may analyze reactions or use social listening tools to analyze mentions. 


To analyze the reach, engagement, and profile activity coming from an organic post, go to your profile, select organic posts, then click ‘View Insights’ below the photo/video. 

For mentions in posts, you may simply type your brand name or product name on the search bar. 


TikTok Analytics provides comprehensive data on your account performance. You just go to your profile and select ‘View Analytics’. You can see the performance of your posts under the ‘Content’ section and ‘Overview’. You may even analyze traffic source types. 

You may also use the ‘Discover’ section to find brand mentions, product mentions, and hashtags. 

Question 5: How do you find new influencers that are suitable to promote products/services? How would you approach them?

In order to get a return on investment in your influencer marketing strategy, you must pick your influencer very carefully. An exceptional candidate would go through how to find them and reach out to them. 

How to find influencers: 

  • In terms of finding potential influencers, you can look at high-performing brands related to your industry. Once you find relevant businesses with high engagement, you can find influencers that tag them on Instagram by going to their profile’s tagged photos. 
  • Utilize hashtags such as #ad, #paid, and #sponsored to sort through engaged influencers you might find suitable for your brand. You can narrow this down by adding more hashtags that are relevant to your industry. 
  • You can utilize Instagram’s “similar profiles” feature which leads you to other influencers of the same caliber. 

Although some influencers may seem like a good fit with your brand, their audience might be very different from your customers. 

If possible, ask potential influencers for the following data sets: 

  • Location
  • Demographics (age and gender) 
  • Interests

Next, check if they have organic and substantial. Be wary of bot-like comments. 

How to engage influencers:  

Once you find the influencer you want to work with, you will have to send them a cold pitch. 

Firstly, it’s important to understand that most influencers’ public accounts receive plenty of messages on a daily basis, so reaching out to them through those channels once isn’t the best idea. Instead, you could reach out to them via email or even via comments. 

If their social media profiles are the only contact information you have, then send them a sequence of messages including follow-ups after a period of time. 

Once you’ve obtained their contact information, it’s imperative to include the following details of the engagement in your pitch: 

  • Campaign background 
  • Company details
  • Benefits/Compensation
  • Guidelines
  • Requirements 
  • Any CTAs or links they need to include

If you’re consistently reaching out to brand ambassadors, it might be beneficial to set up a landing page specifically for influencers that include all these details. 

Question #6: What are different ways to generate leads on social media? 

The first step of increasing revenue is, of course, to generate leads. This is one of the most essential functions of social media marketing, if anything, due to how ubiquitous social media platforms are. 

Your social media manager must enumerate creative ways to generate leads across various social media channels. Here are a few ideas:

  • LinkedIn Dynamic Ads 
    LinkedIn’s Dynamic Ads are highly personalized, and they redirect interested users to a landing page. These ads use the users’ information to personalize content, which is proven to be very effective. Here are the different types of Dynamic Ads:
    • Follow Company Ads
    • Spotlight Ads
    • Content Ads
  • Competitors’ Lead Generation Ad
    Analyzing your competitors’ successful posts and campaigns can give you an idea of what works. You may even take a cue on how to implement your strategy. Luckily, Facebook allows you to view other pages’ ads. There are two ways to do this: 
    1. Go to their page, click ‘Info and Ads’, and then ‘Active Ads’.Go to Facebook Insights, click posts on tab, and select ‘Top Posts’ from ‘Pages you watch’.
    Once you access the data, you can analyze your competitors’ copy, design, CTAs, and other variables. 
  • YouTube Remarketing Ads
    YouTube’s remarketing ads enable you to base your target list on the actions performed by your previous audience. With this data, you can discern which has the highest chance of converting. After all, research shows that 26% of users who abandon their cart return via remarketing ads. Suffice it to say, it’s best to make this ad different from the previous ones. If your audience weren’t that interested the first time, it’s a telltale sign to switch it up.
  • Organic Campaigns
    A great organic campaign drives authentic engagement and shares. However, it’s highly dependent on the content that resonates with your audience. For organic lead campaigns, you must consider the following:
    1. Identify what event or product to introduce/promote to your audience.
    2. Identify your metrics.
    3. Map out content in each social platform, including content format, copy, and timeline. 
    4. Optimize your profile – your display name, username, and bio are highly important in attracting new customers. 
  • List Building on TikTok
    With TikTok’s wide reach of 1 billion users, you get a good list of emails you can reach out to as part of your email marketing campaign. Here are a few ways to build your email list on TikTok:
    • Add a link to your bio. 
    • Integrate other social media platforms and promote your newsletters.
    • Encourage users to subscribe in exchange for something valuable. 
    • Utilize live streaming. 
  • Customer Reviews 
    Social proof is not only a great way to generate leads, but also to convert potential customers. Thus, obtaining your existing customer reviews and testimonials is one way to get good word of mouth to others. Here are a few ideas you can enable social proof on your social media accounts:
    • Reach out to existing customers to share their experiences on social media. 
    • Reward people who are willing to share reviews. 
    • Create a hashtag specifically for positive experiences, so it’s easier for you to track reviews. 
    • Work towards good reviews on Google My Business, as this is linked to search engine results (which may positively impact your SEO). 

Question 7: How do you convert generated leads to sales? 

The next challenge is to ensure those leads generated actually purchase your products. There are a few ways you can make the most of your leads across various social platforms, and a good social media manager could at least name three. 

  1. Promote lead magnets/free incentives in exchange for subscriptions.
    As mentioned, users are likely to give their contact information without any fuss if they get something they want in return, such as free content or discount codes.
  2. Integrating social proof as part of your posts.
    Wyzowl revealed that two out of three people are more likely to purchase a product after watching a testimonial or demo video. Aside from that, people are more likely to take the word of other people rather than a brand’s self-promotion.
  3. Re-engage lost prospects via sequence retargeting ads. 
    As mentioned in the previous question, several studies show that chances for sales are higher with retargeting ads. You may retarget ads toward the following users:
    • Those who regularly read your content but have not subscribed.
    • Those who clicked your first ad but did not sign up. 
    • Web visitors from referrals.
  4. Sponsor content that your target audience is already consuming. 
    With social listening and analytics, you can discern what kind of content your audience is interested in. Getting a great content creator to talk about your brand or products can capture their audience and build trust in your brand.
  5. Launch a referral campaign.
    With enough incentive, consumers don’t mind sharing your products or services with their friends. As we all know, people love a good freebie, and this is often a good social media strategy to get others interested in your brand since the potential lead can trust those who referred you.

Question 8: How would you respond to a negative comment in public display? 

Negative comments are sometimes inevitable as you can’t please all your customers. However, it’s important to carefully handle this as it can escalate pretty quickly. A seasoned social media manager knows the steps to handle the situation carefully: 

  1. Respond immediately. Nothing aggravates an already agitated customer more than a no-response, or even a late response. 
  2. Apologize sincerely. Whether they were being rude or not, it’s best to show professionalism by apologizing to your customers for their dissatisfaction with your products/services. Other users would like to see that you’re taking their customer satisfaction seriously and that you know how to take accountability.
  3. Transform it into a private conversation. Chances are, there are more details to the complaint, so it’s best to take this out of the visibility of other customers. Once you’ve acknowledged their dissatisfaction, let them know that you’ve sent them a direct message to address their concerns more thoroughly.
  4. Thank them for the feedback and always ask how else you can help. Nothing assuages a customer’s frustration more than being respectful and attentive. After all, customers are just looking for a convenient experience, so providing them with good service is key.
  5. Don’t delete comments. In the age of screenshots, it’s pretty much useless to delete negative comments. It also shows that you are trying to disregard their complaints and are not willing to take accountability.
  6. Learn from their feedback and improve. Although not all complaints may be warranted, you can still get some learnings from negative feedback to improve customer experience. 

Question 9: How do you intend to manage your time, given that you will be posting and engaging with audiences on multiple social media accounts on a daily basis? 

Handling a dozen of social media platforms may be overwhelming. So, it’s extremely important that your social media manager can make use of automation tools to manage your posts and content calendar. In fact, Ascend reveals that 44% of marketers use social media automation to drive successful campaigns.

Automation tools can: 

  • Manage all your social media accounts on one platform.
  • Optimize the schedule of your posts.
  • Provide data analytics.
  • Schedule posts.

Here are a few automation tools that your candidate should be familiar with:

  • Social Sprout
  • Agorapulse 
  • SocialPilot 
  • Content Studio
  • Loomly
  • HootSuite
  • Coschedule 

Some of these also provide project management features that can be really helpful for you. 

Note that while your posts are automated, a great social media manager would encourage interacting with your audience manually. This leads to a more authentic experience and engagement. 

Question 10: What makes an effective social media campaign? How would you create a successful campaign? 

Social media campaigns should make a lasting impression. A good social media manager knows that it doesn’t necessarily always have to be viral, but getting it to the right people with a high chance of converting should be every organization’s goal. 

Whether your campaign’s goal is to generate leads, drive engagement, or build loyalty, here are a few things your candidate must remember when running social media campaigns: 

  1. Involve your audience. Social media users love to participate in a creative bandwagon. A good example of this is the successful campaign to promote ASL awareness, the Ice Bucket Challenge. Many social media users, including celebrities, have participated in this campaign. In less than 2 months, ASL Association received about $115 million in donations. Ways to engage your audience are either to encourage creating user-generated content (similar to the ice bucket challenge), responding to a post, or participating in hashtags. 
  2. Explore other platforms. There are plenty of emerging platforms that promote a great community around your brand. Discord, for example, is one of the newer platforms brands have started using to create a tight-knit community. You can utilize a platform like Discord to strengthen your social media campaigns. 
  3. Integrate trends. The easiest way to gain traction for your campaign is to integrate trending topics or events into your social media campaign.A good example of this is how Airbnb leveraged the Oscars 2022 event by creating the #LiveInTheMovies campaign. They asked their followers which move they would live in, accompanied by a short animated video. Their audience, in turn, would share movie settings they would each like to live in while using Airbnb’s hashtag. This campaign alone has earned Airbnb millions.
  4. Go live. Live streams are a fun way to interact with your loyal followers. Create purposeful live streams that will require a number of audience interactions. At the same time, ensure that you grab their attention by providing them with a compelling reason to tune in, like a new product demonstration, or an interview with a brand ambassador.
  5. Know when to focus on just one platform. Not all platforms need to post the same content. Sometimes, it’s best to just focus your strategy on one platform to get the most out of your campaign. Given the Airbnb campaign mentioned earlier, this type of content works really well with Twitter. Know whether this is something replicable to all platforms, or if you just want to target a specific audience in one. 
  6. Experiment with new features. The use of new features always grabs the attention of an audience, simply because it’s not something they have always seen before. It’s important to stay on top of the newest technologies and features of each social media platform in order to make an impact. For example, if your brand appropriately utilized the 360 view feature when it just launched, it would be enough for the audience to be intrigued. 
  7. Consider partnerships. It’s worth forging partnerships with organizations in line with your brand, but without competing for the same sales. Suffice it to say, they should not be your competitors, but rather, should have a similarly interested audience. Partnerships can be mutually beneficial as these organizations can expose you to their market, and vice versa. 

More Specific Questions to Ask

You may want to ask specific questions about their past experiences to test the extent of their knowledge and get an idea of how they work. On the other hand, ask specific questions tailored to your organization and current strategies to check if a candidate would be the right fit for your brand. 

We’ve listed down more narrowed-down questions you can ask per essential skill set. 


  1. Question: What kind of content do you think our audience would be interested in? 
  2. Question: How would you stay on top of trends which our audience would follow? 
  3. Question: Please describe our brand’s tone of voice. What are its major characteristics? 
  4. Question: How would you make our content different across each of our social media platforms?
  5. Question: How would you support our longer-form content marketing efforts? 


  1. Question: What engagement strategies would you suggest that we haven’t done yet? 
  2. Question: What are the characteristics of a viral post? How do you think this is achieved? 
  3. Question: How would you say brands have achieved a “successful engagement” strategy? What would qualify as successful? 
  4. Question: What are your opinions on engaging in other accounts’ posts? 


  1. Question: Which social media tools have you used before? Which do you think is the best social media management tool? 
  2. Question: Let’s say there’s breaking news or a trend that is related to our industry, so you will have to post about it on the fly. How would you handle this ad-hoc task and stay on top of things? 

Communication & Customer Care

  1. Question: How would you deal with countless inquiries on social media platforms? 
  2. Question: How would you assuage a negative complaint that has gotten a lot of traction? 
  3. Question: Have you ever experienced managing a social media crisis? Please tell us how you handled it.


  1. Question: What was the most successful social media campaign you managed? Describe why it was successful. 
  2. Question: What was your role in the ideation process of that campaign? How did you come up with that idea? 
  3. Question: Name a few ideas off the top of your head to promote our latest products. 
  4. Question: How would you design a campaign that encourages user-generated content? Have you had experience with that?  

Data Analysis

  1. Question: Which metrics are most important to you in monitoring campaign performance? 
  2. Question: How long would the campaign have to run in order for you to gain any findings?
  3. Question: If your current campaign is not hitting goals, how would you adjust it to perform better? 

How Recruiters Should Prepare for an Interview

Whether you’re a seasoned or greenhorn hiring manager, preparing for a job interview gets the best out of your time with each candidate. The interview process is one of the most important stages of screening –  not only do you discover the capabilities of your candidates, but you can also discern whether they will work well with the team. 

According to LinkedIn Expert, Paul Petrone, there are a few steps recruiters should do to prepare for every interview: 

  1. Have a clear understanding of the role. 
  2. Prepare a list of interview questions that will test both their knowledge/skills and work ethics.
  3. Thoroughly review the candidate’s LinkedIn profile, CV, and application. 
  4. Demonstrate what working for your company is like or describe your company culture. 
  5. Prepare to answer questions from candidates, especially when it comes to job responsibilities. 
  6. Once the assessment is done, give them feedback on whether they got the job or not. For those who have not made it, it would be the kind thing to go out of your way and let them know where they fell short.

Note that sometimes, an interview may not be enough to test the skills of your candidate, especially those with highly technical roles. Specifically for the social media manager role, it’s worth checking our hiring guide, which provides a free assessment test you can use. 

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